May #47 : The Way We Live Now: Mathilde Krim

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A POZ Family Album

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The Way We Live Now

The Way We Live Now: Andrew Sullivan

The Way We Live Now: Jocelyn Elders

The Way We Live Now: Mary Lucey

The Way We Live Now: Rafael Campo

The Way We Live Now: Mathilde Krim

The Way We Live Now: Mario Cooper

The Way We Live Now: Richard Goldstein

The Way We Live Now: Phill Wilson

The Way We Live Now: Michael Saag

The Way We Live Now: David Ho

The Way We Live Now: Jon Kaiser

The Way We Live Now: Sarah Schulman

The Way We Live Now: Judy Greenspan

The Way We Live Now: Eric Rofes & Dan Savage

The Way We Live Now: Kaiya Montaocean

The Way We Live Now: Ashok Row Kavi

The Way We Live Now: Pat Califia

The Way We Live Now: Asia Russell & Julie Davids

The Way We Live Now: Dennis DeLeon

The Way We Live Now: Jason Farrell

The Way We Live Now: Pernessa Seele

Honeymoon to HAARTache

Monkey Business


When Plagues Return

To the Editor

School Ties

The Bottom Line

Up Close & Personal

Say What

Two Peas in a POZ

In Cold Blood


Rubber Poll

Poster of the Month

Success Has Made a Failure of Us

POZarazzi: The Bod Squad

Saint Sorge


Anecdotal Antidotes

Get Over It

Rubdown Lowdown

The Berlin Stories

T-20, Coming to a Combo Near You

Pill Drill

Suck in Your Gut

Put the Gart Before the Course

Where to Find It

The Skinny on Lipo


The Road to Wellville


Most Popular Lessons

The HIV Life Cycle


Herpes Simplex Virus

Syphilis & Neurosyphilis

Treatments for Opportunistic Infections (OIs)

What is AIDS & HIV?

Hepatitis & HIV

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May 1999

The Way We Live Now: Mathilde Krim

Founder, amfAR

Q: When amfAR was founded 14 years ago, there were few AIDS institutions. Now we have thousands -- but as our sense of crisis fades, what is their future?

A: We have problems when things go badly and when things go well. When things go badly people think, What's the point, people are going to die anyway, and when things go well, like now -- when we're reaping the fruits of 10 years of extraordinary science that has truly prolonged lives -- the public has responded to the good news with a lack of concern. We don't have that terrible sense of crisis anymore, even though epidemic is still spreading and we still can't save lives.

We would prefer that pure reasoning would bring in support. But unfortunately the public is very fickle. So a certain amount of tension is still needed in AIDS. We deal with two distinct constituencies. One is government bodies; they've now been educated enough that they understand the threat of AIDS, so that funding should hold. The other is the public at large, which has mostly lost its sense of crisis. Many AIDS organizations, which depend largely on contributions, feel the lack of a sense of crisis translate into a lack of dollars.

We also have the disease wars, where advocates for other illnesses say AIDS gets too much money. We have to fight that and educate the public about how important AIDS research is to medicine in general. Research on AIDS deals with the underpinnings of the immune system, how viruses work -- the same principles can be used for treatment of other diseases.

Q: Where are we headed?

A: We're about halfway on a long road. It may be 10 years before we have curative treatments and a vaccines available, and that's a long time. I worry about whether people can hold out.

It's important to remember how many people we lost, how many died but served the community by participating in clinical trials, saving other people's lives, if not their own.

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